Running a business these days is tough. Depending on your industry, you might be navigating the ins and outs of federal aid and emergency loans. You’re probably monitoring the well-being of your employees and the safety of your clients. And, like most of us, you’re pivoting between short-term worries and long-term planning—all in a business climate that’s anything but predictable.
In times like these, it’s easy to take technology for granted. Even with all the challenges of remote work, we expect our laptops to work perfectly every day. No matter where our business information is stored, we expect it to always be accessible. And if one device or one drive crashes, we expect a backup to be available instantly.
But what happens if your data suddenly disappears? Severe weather has swept across swaths of North America this spring, while hurricane season is right around the corner for the East Coast and Gulf Coast—and fire season follows right on its heels on the West Coast.
If a disaster struck next week or next month, would your business survive? How long could regular operations last if you lost the critical information needed to keep your company running? Do you have a plan for how you and your employees would respond to different data loss scenarios — say, a data breach, an extended power outage, or simple user error?
For most business owners, the answers to those questions aren’t clear-cut. Many of us only consider data security when it’s too late — after cybercriminals have compromised your information or the inadequacy of your regular data backups becomes evident.
So how can you be more proactive about data protection? At CMIT Solutions, we ask our clients a few straightforward questions to help:
1. What does your current data situation look like?
Working with a trusted IT provider, you can capture a data snapshot that categorizes all assets by importance, by location, and by access needs. Once that’s complete, data backup, storage, and recovery protocols can be implemented to keep your data safe—and identify any threats or vulnerabilities that could negatively affect your business.
2. How is your data backed up, transmitted, and stored?
In a perfect world, your information should be automatically backed up on a regular basis, securely transmitted from your computers to remote physical and cloud-based locations, and stored in a redundant fashion that mitigates the risk of any individual backup being affected. That’s just the first step toward true data security, though. Maintaining reliable access to those backups represents the next step. At CMIT Solutions, we integrate robust data recovery procedures with all data backup plans, helping companies retrieve their impacted information as efficiently as possible to support the return to day-to-day business operations.
3. What would your business do first if those data assets were compromised?
Unexpected data loss can deal a devastating blow to businesses big and small. One benchmark from the U.S. Small Business Administration states that more than half of small companies impacted by data loss go out of business within six months. So how would your company respond if a data disaster struck? Would you be able to conduct business as usual if you didn’t have access to critical client and financial information? Or would your lack of a coordinated response only compound the problem? Having a plan in place to understand and react to data loss is important.
4. What are the main threats to your business data?
Depending on the size of your business and the industry you work in, the answers might differ. Ransomware, phishing, and data breaches can affect anyone, but cyberthreats come at modern companies from every angle, often served up in a mixture of malicious emails, infected web ads, and even illicit phone calls. Stealing your company’s data may be the main goal, but the methods that cybercriminals use to achieve their aims are always changing.
5. Do you have extra network security tools in place to surround your data with enhanced protection?
A proactive approach to cybersecurity is a must, especially in today’s unpredictable business landscape. Many companies thrive with managed IT services that rely on around-the-clock monitoring and maintenance. This combines traditional tools like firewalls, automated security updates, and anti-malware with more advanced protocols like threat detection, traffic analysis, and incident response. If you aren’t sure about the need for these extra layers of protection for your data, it’s time to talk to an IT provider.
At CMIT Solutions, we believe that cybersecurity and data protection are a must for modern businesses. Instead of waiting around to see whether things will get worse, we work proactively, 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and 365 days a year to keep our clients and their companies safe. We understand the threat posed by unexpected data loss, and we strive to mitigate its negative impacts before they strike.
Want to safeguard your most important information? Contact CMIT Solutions today.